Basic Carnitas

Basic Carnitas

If you have not guessed, I love slow cooking meat while I am at work because I come home to a great meal ready to go. I tend to eat food that has a bit of a kick to it, but sometimes I want a more savory dish, such as this basic carnitas. Not everyone loves things as spicy as I do and I first saw this recipe through the Whole 30 cookbook. This is staple in my house because a large batch can be made at once and I will eat off of it all week long. Thicker, tougher cut of meats are best cooked via slow cooking in a crock, or in an enameled cast iron dutch oven. This recipe calls for searing the meat, then slow cooking it in its own juices, so the dutch oven is perfect for being a one pot option. 

1 1/2 tablespoons salt

1 teaspoon black pepper

2 pounds pork shoulder, cut into 4 inch cubes

2 tablespoons cooking fat (I used bacon fat)

1/ medium white onion, roughly chopped

3 cloves of garlic, finely minced

1/2 teaspoon chili powder

1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

Preheat your oven to 350. Season your meat with the salt and pepper. Set aside in a bowl. In a dutch oven over medium heat, melt the cooking fat and coat the bottom of the pot well. You do not want the meat to stick. Once the fat is hot, add a few pieces of pork and brown the sides, 3-4 minutes per side. Once all pieces of pork have been browned, set aside. 

The boyfriend actually made this recipe while I was at work. He melted some chunks of bacon in the pot to render the fat, which is why this picture has some chunks of bacon in the pot. 

The boyfriend actually made this recipe while I was at work. He melted some chunks of bacon in the pot to render the fat, which is why this picture has some chunks of bacon in the pot. 

In the same pot, lower the heat to medium-low. Add the onion and cook for 5 minutes. Add the garlic and stir constantly for 1 minute. Add 1 cup of water, the chili powder and cinnamon. Increase the heat to medium high, put the pork back into the pot and bring to a boil. 

Once at a boil, turn off the heat, cover with the lid and transfer the pot into the pre-heated oven. Bake for 2 1/2 hours, turning the meat after each hour.  Once finished, remove the pot from the oven and take the pork out of the pot. In a large bowl, shred the pork with two forks. Enjoy over fresh greens (I love eating it over freshly sauteed kale) or by itself topped with fresh lime, green onions and cilantro. ENJOY! 

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